First-time pregnancy and self-esteem issues

[deleted account] ( 12 moms have responded )

My name is Jaime and I will be 21 this coming April. I have always had to watch my weight and what I eat because I can gain so easily. Before I got pregnant, I had lost a lot of weight since junior high, and was very proud of myself. I had lost thirty pounds and was keeping it off with diet and exercise. But when I found out I was pregnant and began gaining weight and inches in my tummy, I started to feel like people were looking at me, as though they were judging me. No offense to anyone, please, but I felt as though people thought I was just letting myself go and just getting fat. I didn't feel like people could tell I was pregnant, and I still feel that way occasionally, even with my belly sticking out like it does. My husband says I look great, and the scales say I haven't gained any more than I should for my original weight, but my self-esteem has still gone down. I feel more physically fit than I ever have, and I think I'm in the best shape I've ever been, but still, I just don't feel good about my tummy being huge and my clothes not fitting right and I don't like the looks I get from people. It's probably just the region I live in; so many people seem to assume younger mothers are single moms who made mistakes, when I'm certainly not. But it makes me not want to go out without my husband, because he is my walking proof that I'm doing at least most things right, and I don't care what I look like as long as my hubby is there.

Is this just me or are there others out there who have felt the same way with their first pregnancies? How did your pregnancy affect your self-esteem?

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Courtney - posted on 04/16/2014

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I'm going through the same thing. Before I got pregnant I struggled all the time to get the figure I wanted, and now that I'm pregnant it's like all of that hard work was for nothing. I know it's all in my head, but I feel like my husband doesn't look at me the same, I avoid pictures at all costs, and I just don't feel good about my self at all. I have high anxiety levels, and always have, and I've been stressing about stretch marks like there's no tomorrow. I hate the way I feel about myself. I don't know what to do about it either.

Megan - posted on 10/09/2010

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I felt the same way. Although i never had to diet to keep my weight down no offense but i was very very self conscious about my wieght and i am now more than ever since i had my daughter it drives me crazy i felt horrible about my figure when i was pregnant and stil kinda do after but you just have to keep in mind that you are going through this for the little angel that you are going to have seein your babys face for the first time will make it all worth it i promise!

Kelina - posted on 10/09/2010

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If you're worried people will not realize you're pregnant yo could try ordering some cute maternity stuff online. I have a great shirt that says big things come in small packages with a stork who's holding a bundle that's around my belly. I like to wear that when i feel fat rather than pregnant lol. And i definitely understand the looks! heck i have people who know i'm married and still give me those looks! It was actually easier for me the first time around cause my baby was the frist grandchild. This time i don't have the same amount of support as my SIL is due 8 weeks ahead of me and i already have one lol.

[deleted account]

I'm getting much better about my big belly now. I just have days when I feel horrible and fat and don't want to go out. It also sucks that most of my favorite shirts don't fit anymore and I can't find any cute maternity clothes because for some reason no store around here sells them. Even Walmart has stopped selling maternity clothes, and I just don't understand. I don't want to wear a bunch of frumpy stuff. I'm preggers, and it's supposed to be beautiful, and I don't want to just wear a bunch of huge t-shirts all the time.

@Jackie ~ I'm so sorry your husband was like that with you :( That wasn't fair at all for him to be embarrassed when he's the one who helped bring your baby into your world. He should have been proud his baby was in your belly. Also, stretch marks aren't a big thing to me. I haven't even really thought of them since I got pregnant. I used to all the time, because I got them so easily just from losing weight, but my hubby thinks they're beautiful just like the rest of me and so I don't care if I get them again. As for the crying about the comments on cuteness, it was the same for me. I didn't like the idea that before I was pregnant people may have thought I was ugly. But now I just take it as an affirmation that they know I'm pregnant, and I feel better about it.

But sometimes it's still hard because I don't want to go out. I don't want people over. I just want to be with my hubby or sleep with what time I have now before the baby gets here. I don't even want to hang out with our parents because I can't relax if they're constantly fawning over me and the baby in my belly.

I also don't exactly like people touching my belly. It's always been hard for me to be okay with being touched and I just feel like my hubby should be the only one who can touch my belly. I even got a bit upset when my own mother patted it a couple weeks ago. But people like big pregnant bellies, apparently, so they like to come up and rub my belly and feel for the baby and all that jazz. It's a wonder I haven't punched someone out yet xD

Natalie - posted on 10/08/2010

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gaining weight and a growing belly is apart of the pregnancy experience....... just enjoy it and dont worry about about it....... u shouldnt care what other people think of u, because u are experiencing the most beautiful thing a woman could....... youll be fine i gained 25 lbs with my pregnancy and a month later i was right back to my size before my daughter was born...... just enjoy it!!!!!!!!!!

Jackie - posted on 10/08/2010

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O another thing I forgot. If you get stretch marks (some women are lucky and dont) dont worry about them. Since I was so small I got them. I have one on each hip that is the width of my thumb and both are about 3 inches long. They show the blue vein underneath them so I call them my neon marks. I have tons of them on my lower abs, breasts, and thighs. I dont worry about them. I'm proud of them because my kids gave them to me and if people dont like them then they dont have to look at them.

Jackie - posted on 10/08/2010

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We've all been there. Before I had my first baby I was a slim and trim 115 lbs. I'm 5'7" so thats pretty tiny. When my belly started to show I was looked at really funny. I was 17 when I first got pregnant and no I wasnt married. I got tons of looks. Around 7 months I had the pregnancy waddle and looked like I had a tiny basketball under my shirt. I cried all the time because I felt like I was fat. I only gained 15 lbs with my first baby. Before I had my second baby I was 125lbs. I was married and 26 years old. I gained 15 lbs again. I still cried alot because I felt huge. I felt like I embarrassed my husband, which I was since he admitted it to me. We're divorced now.
We all go through it no matter how big or small we were to begin with. Our bodies go through tons of hormonal changes and our minds go crazy with it. I either was always crying or mad with both my pregnancies and it didnt matter what was going on at the time. When people would tell me I had the pregnancy glow I would cry. My mom told me how cute I was pregnant and I cried. I felt like they meant I wasnt cute or pretty before. Its stupid looking back but thats just being pregnant for you.

Stifler's - posted on 10/08/2010

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I felt crap and felt like I couldn't breathe and like a beached whale when I was pregnant. Just remember that this weight gain is only for 10 months. You have the baby, you feel worse because you're so tired and then you start to go back to normal at 3 months you feel better if you exercise and that, I weighed less than before I was pregnant when Logan was 4 months.

Jessica - posted on 10/07/2010

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it wasnt so bad for me while i was pregnant. its all after i had my daughter, and still to this day. i worked hard to look like i did before baby, and now i have to start all over again. i was a size five, 115 pounds before i got preggers. now i am a size ten and 145-150. its been 10 months and i still cant get rid of all the weight. but when i was pregnant no one seemed to realize i was pregnant so i just thought i looked very fat. but then again i got up to 175 while i was pregnant cuz i was pretty little before hand. i have always had selfesteem issues, and even though i got my precious daughter out of it, pregnancy def. made it a whole lot worse.
there is nothing worse than having everyone tell you how great you look and how much weight you have lost when you dont see it when you look at yourself!!

Tiffany - posted on 10/07/2010

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Stop worrying about what others think sweetie. You are pregnant and it is beautiful! What matters is what you think. You need to wake up everyday, look at your self in the mirror, look at the beautiful belly, and remind yourself that you are glowing and gorgeous. Quit with this self esteem thing, because you are beautiful. You are about to be a mommy! You need to start worrying about having enough diapers and wipes and onesies!!! :)

Lacye - posted on 10/07/2010

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to be honest, i never noticed that i was getting bigger. of course i'm a big person anyways. I never really had the self-esteem problems. but some women do. it's normal.

Jennifer - posted on 10/07/2010

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i definitely felt the same. i had an extremely hard time until i was about 7 months along, and VERY obviously pregnant. getting into a healthy frame of mind is no easy task, and requires a lot of effort on your part. it is not something that will just change...you have to actively work on changing your thinking. even though there may be things about your appearance that you may not like right now, your body is doing and amazing and beautiful thing. i try to remind myself that not matter how unhappy i am with my weight, my body is pretty fucking awesome for not only being able to take a couple cells, and grow them into a full fledged human being, but also for being able to feed and nurture that baby once he was born. being pregnant, having children, giving birth, breastfeeding...these are all things that are normal...we see them on a daily basis so we forget how amazing the human body truly is for being able to do it.

my point is...because i was able to carry and nurture my son for 9 months, and because i am able to feed him, i LOVE my body, despite all its outward imperfections. focus on how amazing your body is for all the things it CAN do, rather than its shortcomings.

also, i never wanted to go out without my husband when i was pregnant either....and i had a really hard time when my fingers got a bit swollen the last couple weeks and i couldn't wear my wedding ring. even now i still don't like going out with my son, without my hubby.

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